Rocky Mount suspicious vehicle call leads to arrest of Virginia felon

Rocky Mount suspicious vehicle call leads to arrest of Virginia felon
Published: Sep. 24, 2023 at 4:51 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 25, 2023 at 9:13 AM EDT
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ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. (WITN) - A suspicious vehicle call leads to a chase and DWI arrest in Rocky Mount.

On Sunday at 3:07 a.m. Rocky Mount Police Department officers responded to the 3100 block of West Gypsy Trail regarding a suspicious vehicle.

According to officials, once they arrived, they saw a vehicle stopped at a stop sign facing a house with its headlights on. Officers then contacted the driver, 38-year-old Bernard Ruth from Virginia. Officials say Ruth was under the influence of alcohol, and while talking with officers, Ruth fled the scene.

Officials say two officers were partially inside the vehicle when Ruth took off. One of the officers became trapped and was dragged for a short distance before being dislodged from the vehicle. The first officer sustained a shoulder injury.

The second officer fell when Ruth took off and has minor scrapes and cuts. Officials say the officers attempted to catch up with Ruth on West Raleigh Blvd. But before they could, Ruth crashed into a house at 1267 W. Raleigh Blvd. and was taken into custody.

Police said their investigation revealed there were two firearms in Ruth’s possession inside the vehicle and showed Ruth was a convicted felon from Virginia.

Ruth was charged with two counts of assault on a law enforcement officer with a deadly weapon, two counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, felony flee elude arrest, and several other traffic-related offenses.

According to officials, Ruth received an $80,000 secured bond and was taken to the Nash County Jail.

Regarding the injuries to the officers, Police Chief Robert Hassell stated, “Our officers understand the risks associated with this profession, but they are always ready and prepared to respond when called upon. I’m thankful that both officers in this incident are going home today and a repeat criminal was taken off the streets.”